READINGS: Sept 5-12 - Descartes and the epistemological tradition
René Descartes, Meditations, esp. I and VI.
Sept. 5, 2013
1. EPISTEMOLOGY, SCEPTICISM & PHILOSOPHY
2. VARIETIES OF SCEPTICISM
Local: induction, perception, ethics, aesthetics, etc.
General: epistemic and metaphysical (leads to idealism)
ex: dreaming, demons…
How do we distinguish what is reality in the absence of our senses?
What is reality?
What are illusions?
SKEPTICS – HOW DO YOU KNOW? HOW CAN YOU BE SURE?
Skeptics of knowledge and ethics (non-cognitive)
Skeptics of aesthetics
3. DESCARTES AND CENTRALITY OF EPISTEMOLOGY
Possibility of Error; knowledge of the physical world
4. KANT’S CRITIQUE OF PURE REASON
“Time was when metaphysics was entitled the Queen of all Sciences…”
The limits of our thoughts (legitimate speculations) good metaphysics vs. bad
Critique of thought
5. DICHOTOMY OF “INSIDE” AND “OUTSIDE”
Ontological assumption what IS
Epistemology: the analysis and understanding of knowledge as a response to
6. NORMALITY VS. EXPLANATORY Empirical take on beliefs
-does not consider WHY people ought to believe
beliefs should be justifiable
Naturalized epistemology: normative knowledge derived from empirical
7. EXTERNAL AND INTERNAL
Justification of beliefs (from internally)
Knowledge derived from the external
8. FOUNDATIONALISM VS. COHERENCE
Relationship between our knowledge and beliefs